FAN NEWS & BLOGS

12/03/2009 12:00, Report by Chris McKenna
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Blog: Sit down Mourinho

Reds fan Chris McKenna on beating Inter and getting one over Jose...

I have to admit on the way to the ground I was feeling a little worried about the “Mourinho factor”. He's been all over the sports pages of the newspapers this week and I had recollections of his touchline run when he was Porto boss and – although it was unnecessary – the thought made me shiver as I made my way off the train.

However, as soon as I found my seat in the Stretford End, the nerves turned to anticipation, the buzz around the stadium was absolutely fantastic. When the teams emerged from the tunnel, my earlier anxiety soon disappeared as a roar went around the stadium.

There was the expected reception for the Inter boss, who received boos, whistles and plenty of songs from the home supporters – there's a definite love/hate relationship with the former Chelsea boss.

Sir Alex certainly wasn’t worried about Mourinho though and put out an attacking line-up as we looked to book our place in the quarter-finals.

We couldn’t have dreamt of a better start as Nemanja Vidic headed us in front after just four minutes, but Inter were never going to roll over. United didn’t seem to take control of the game as we usually do at home, we let a few passes slip in midfield and Inter were dangerous on the counter.

An away goal for the visitors would have turned the tie on its head and there was a huge gasp in the Stretford End when Zlatan Ibrahimovic's header bounced off the ground and the bar before going just over.

Anxiety began to creep in again around the stadium but the singing didn’t stop where I was as the crowd urged United to get back on top. There was more gasping when Edwin Van der Sar was forced to make an outstanding save from a Dejan Stankovic strike and yet again when Ibrahimovic fired just wide moments before the break.

The discussion over the obligatory meat and potato pie at half-time was that we needed to take a greater hold of the game, keep possession and get the crucial second goal, otherwise Inter could sneak it.

We didn’t have to wait long for that second goal as Ronaldo extended the lead four minutes after the restart with a fine header, and the unease that had been spreading was vanquished.

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